US extends sanctions on Sudan

US extends sanctions on Sudan

WASHINGTON – The United States on Tuesday extended sanctions against Sudan as a sponsor of terrorism, and is sending a top diplomat there to assess the results of a US-brokered peace accord that ended 21 years of civil war.

The moves came as Sudan’s First Vice President Salva Kiir was in Washington on his first official US visit since succeeding former southern rebel leader John Garang, who died in a July 30 airplane crash. Kiir, who is also president of the government of southern Sudan, met with Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the US deputy secretary of state, Robert Zoellick.Sudanese officials had said he was expected to lobby Washington to lift the sanctions, which include an economic embargo.But the White House said the sanctions would continue another year because Sudan’s actions and policies “continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.”Had Bush not renewed the sanctions first imposed on November 3, 1997, they would have expired on Thursday.Zoellick, speaking at a joint news conference with Kiir after their meeting, said that he would visit Sudan next week to assess the implementation of the peace accord signed on January 9 by the Sudanese government and Kiir’s former southern rebel group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).Zoellick, who has visited Sudan three times this year, said he would travel to Khartoum, Darfur and Juba in the south to evaluate the situation after the pact that ended the civil war that left some two million people dead.- Nampa-AFPKiir, who is also president of the government of southern Sudan, met with Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the US deputy secretary of state, Robert Zoellick.Sudanese officials had said he was expected to lobby Washington to lift the sanctions, which include an economic embargo.But the White House said the sanctions would continue another year because Sudan’s actions and policies “continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.”Had Bush not renewed the sanctions first imposed on November 3, 1997, they would have expired on Thursday.Zoellick, speaking at a joint news conference with Kiir after their meeting, said that he would visit Sudan next week to assess the implementation of the peace accord signed on January 9 by the Sudanese government and Kiir’s former southern rebel group, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).Zoellick, who has visited Sudan three times this year, said he would travel to Khartoum, Darfur and Juba in the south to evaluate the situation after the pact that ended the civil war that left some two million people dead.- Nampa-AFP

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